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Lead Us Into Darkness
Released: 1995, Necropolis Records
Hidden Gem Review
At the request of some of our readers to review a bit more Black Metal, I dug through my vaults and dug out a quartet of debut albums by European Black Metal albums that were all recorded in 1995. They are Demonic (Norway), Desaster (Germany), Manic Butcher (Czech) and Veles (Poland). Enjoy.
Demonic, who I am assuming are now long-gone, have the honour of being the first release by the now well established label, Necropolis. We are greeted with a black and white cover, a gloomy silhouette of a long sentry (?) on a dead tree and a semi-illegible, spiky logo complete with upside crosses. Things look good! Inside we have a 14 minute, four song EP produced by Pytten, with lyrics and notes.
The two man team of Witchdemon and Fiend pictured inside with a rather blurry winter forest scene create some very decent audio mayhem. Black metal enthusiasts might suggest that the music is somewhat derivative but I felt it is very well done. Overall the sound is raw, unpolished but not completely unlistenable. The tempo is midrange to fast but not total blastbeats. There is a constant underlying drone of keyboards that add some nice moody atmosphere. The vocals are also raw and mid-range not total hiss or shriek but certainly not a death-growl style. The songwriting is not particularly complex but does have some nice tempo changes, breaks and lulls before taking off again. Demonic are certainly not the most intense BM experience ever but they do it well and with what seems to be some conviction.
The first three tracks suffer slightly from translation issues so be warned, but me that has never bothered me. The last track is in Norwiegen, (I believe) which to me always adds an element of mystery and darkness because I have no idea what they are signing about. The imagination runs to topics of the occult but for all I know the lyrics could be about sitting at home and watching re-reruns of sit-coms on TV, however that is unlikely.
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